OAN’s Abril Elfi
11:36 AM – Thursday, September 28, 2023
Over 200 businesses in Oakland, California have participated in a one-day strike in hopes the city will have more police on the street due to rising crime rates.
Oakland businesses temporarily shut down Tuesday afternoon to demand that city, county, and state leaders do more to safeguard small businesses and community residents from crime.
Sarah Ryan, the manager of a Mexican restaurant, told the press that the shut downs felt like another pandemic.
“It feels like another pandemic,” she said. “We’re calling for people to come in and visit our business so that we can stay in business. We are on a street that should be bustling all the time, and the foot traffic is just gone.”
On Tuesday morning, dozens of merchants and residents held a press conference outside Le Cheval, an Old Oakland Vietnamese restaurant whose owners have decided to close permanently this Saturday after 38 years of operation due to an increase in vehicle break-ins and commercial burglaries in the surrounding area.
Vietnamese Chamber of Commerce leader Dr. Jennifer Tran said that without basic safety there is no community.
“Without basic safety, there is no business,” Tran said. “Without basic safety, there is no community. Without safety, there is no city. Without basic safety, there is only chaos.”
Reportedly, District 5 Councilmember Noel Gallo, former Alameda County District Attorney candidate Terry Wiley, Oakland NAACP president Cynthia Adams, and Calabash owner Nigel Jones also spoke at the event.
Former Oakland Mayoral Candidate Loren Taylor and members of Neighbors Together Oakland, a nonprofit, attended but did not speak.
According to a weekly crime report released Monday, the Oakland Police Department (OPD) has received 1,109 reports of commercial burglaries across the city. This represents a 9% increase over the number of business burglary reports received in the city during the same period last year.